Watchdog Requests Investigation into Arizona Rep. Mark Finchem for Violating State Campaign Finance Law
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 14, 2021
Contact: Michael Clauw, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202.780.5750
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Campaign for Accountability (CfA) filed a complaint with Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs requesting an investigation into Arizona State Representative Mark Finchem (R-Oro Valley) for violating state campaign finance laws by requesting donors send funds intended for a political action committee (PAC) to his personal Venmo and PayPal accounts.
CfA Executive Director Michelle Kuppersmith said, “First Rep. Finchem ignored Arizona’s financial disclosure laws and now it appears he’s violated campaign finance law. Not a great start for someone running for higher office.”
In late February 2021, CfA filed a complaint with the Arizona Secretary of State over Finchem’s failure to disclose a $6,000 payment the Trump campaign made to his company, Mark Finchem, PLLC, for consulting in support of the former President’s election fraud lie. The $6,000 apparently did not cover the full costs of Finchem’s work because he started requesting contributions from supporters.
On February 14, Finchem solicited his followers on two social media platforms to make contributions to a PAC called Make Arizona Precincts Sound, then known as Make Arizona Safe Again, to pay off debt he allegedly incurred while hosting an unofficial “election integrity” hearing for the Trump campaign that, according to the Arizona Mirror, “served as a forum for unfounded conspiracy theories and baseless allegations that Joe Biden didn’t really win Arizona’s election.” Yet, instead of directing supporters to donate directly to the PAC, Finchem directed donors to his personal accounts, later claiming on Telegram that supporters donated $10,000 in just 12 hours.
Arizona law prohibits the commingling of PAC and personal funds, stating that “Committee monies shall be segregated in different bank accounts from personal monies.” By directing PAC contributions to his personal bank accounts, Finchem appears to have violated state law.
Kuppersmith continued, “In typical fashion, Trump didn’t cover his debts, leaving Finchem in the red and desperate enough to recoup his losses that he played fast and loose with Arizona law. The Secretary of State should conduct an investigation and refer the matter to the Attorney General for further action.”
Campaign for Accountability is a nonpartisan, nonprofit watchdog organization that uses research, litigation, and aggressive communications to expose misconduct and malfeasance in public life and hold those who act at the expense of the public good accountable for their actions.